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Student ambassador: Jonathan Ajah

Jonathan AjahDegree: Master of Public Health, part-time distance learning (current Year 2 student)
Location: Nigeria
Occupation: Medical doctor

What the MPH means to me

The MPH continues to provide me with the knowledge, understanding and skillsets that continue to help me develop competencies in facing local and global public health challenges.

What I learn strongly complements my work and past experience as a medical doctor. What I am learning will significantly shape and direct my career in global public health in future.

The support and resources available to students at The University of Manchester is simply amazing. Its library services are superb. The MPH admin, e-learning, lecturers and tutors are very supportive and approachable.

There is a residential induction each September for new students and this is complemented by online induction workshops that all students can access.

In summary, the MPH course at The University of Manchester is everything I desire in a postgraduate course; it's reputable, efficiently run, student-friendly and renowned in Europe and the world.

Academic background and career

I gained admission to Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Medical School in 2004 and graduated in October 2011. Prior to graduation, I knew I wanted to be a surgeon with a specialisation in urology, plastic or orthopaedic surgery.

After completing housemanship during national service in 2013, my first practical public health experience started with the UKAiD Paths2 program in Kaduna, Nigeria. This encounter broadened my perspective from being merely a clinician focused on saving one life to a clinician/public health practitioner focused on saving thousands of lives.

After a year with the UKAiDs Paths2, I joined the Kaduna HIV/AIDS hospital programme supported by the Kaduna Ministry of Health and Human Service, the CIHP and the CDC, which solidified my base and interest in the public health domain further.

In April 2015, I passed the primaries examination of the West African College of Surgeons and, in July of that year, I moved to the surgical department of the Barau Dikko University teaching hospital.

In August 2015, I was offered a Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarship to study a master's in public health and primary care at The University of Manchester. In my current job, I serve as departmental chief resident and routinely participate in departmental research.

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